It doesn’t matter, you can have as many mentors as you choose to, and as many as you can easily find around. You may have one, you may have two, and you could, indeed, decide to have 10. The most important thing is for you to have at least one person as your mentor, and also be certain of what you stand to gain from the relationship.
These days, it is becoming quite difficult to identify suitable mentors around; just the way it is becoming hard to identify great thinkers whose words of wisdom can be on the marble. One cannot but continue to ask many questions like “Where are the Ciceros of this world? How about the Aristotles, the Martin Luther King, Jnrs, the Mother Teressas, the Madam Kutis, the Nelson Mandelas, the Awolowos, the Nnamdi Azikwes, and the Tafawa Balewas of this wonderful continent?” How come it is becoming so difficult, most especially in this part of the world, to find people whose recent words can be conveniently quoted in speeches and books? Where have all the sages and notable men and women disappeared to? How come the dead ones among the great figures of yesteryears appear not to be “reincarnating?”
In these days of various legal actions against notable men and women; in this era of numerous charges of fraudulent acts against our so-called leaders; and in this period of lies and deceptions from those that we would ordinarily want to emulate; it is, indeed, becoming a herculean task to find genuine mentors to recommend.
But that is not to say that great mentors don’t exist any longer. They do, but they seem to be getting fewer by the day. This then makes it difficult for one to easily identify them. The fact that someone is always making self-aggrandizement noise on radio and television does not make him a good mentor. The fact that someone is rich doesn’t qualify him either; he may turn out to be a 419ner. Our new world seems to be celebrating criminals than the honest ones. Popularity has now become a matter of how much hype you can create, whether or not you have what you proclaim!
“Ye shall know them by their fruits…,” so says the Holy Book. There is no magic by which you can know a great mentor unless you either “experience” him, or observe him for a while. His acts, his speeches, and his silence will convince you that he’s indeed a great mentor for you to have. As a beneficiary of mentorship, I can boldly confirm that great mentors can make the journey to your dreamland much shorter and sweeter.
So, what exactly do great mentors do? What do you stand to gain by having a great mentor beside you, most especially if you are a young person? Thanks to Nicola Cook, author of “A New You.” She has made this article quite easier for me to write. I will be borrowing part of her views on “The Role of a Powerful Peer” as I touch on the following 7 Great Things you stand to gain from great mentors.
Call it fear. Call it lack of confidence. One of the things preventing many people from attaining their peak point is wrong beliefs. They seem to have lost that “I Can” spirit of their childhood years. Sadly, these wrong beliefs would have been totally eliminated from their lives but for the kind of people surrounding them. A lot of beautiful dreams have been killed by parents, friends, spouses, or colleagues who keep singing bad songs like “No! That will be too difficult for you to achieve.” Or, “Ha! It is not possible for a woman to do that.” As they sing, the soul becomes weakened, and the dream is finally jettisoned!
Great mentors are different. They believe in you unconditionally. They supply you with the needed fuel for your engine to continue running. Even when you want to give up, they serve you with the impetus to forge ahead.
Great mentors empower people. They don’t disempower you or put you down. Even when you are actually down, a great mentor helps you to rise up. He is that person who continues to reassure you that you possess all the needed powers within you. He asks you to exercise your powers and achieve your aims.
A great mentor continuously reminds you that when your plans don’t go as expected, it is an opportunity to learn from your experience and be energized for the next level.
When you need supports to make your dreams and goals come to reality, a great mentor is someone you can lean on. He serves as your pillar. He goes all his way to support you in every respect, and such supports may be both moral and financial. Because a great mentor believes in you, he is ready to give any assistance you may require.
4. High Standard
Great mentors cannot stand mediocrities so they hold you to a high standard. A great mentor wants you to be the best and he does everything within his power to make you see the reasons for this. He gives you the confidence that you can achieve it.
One of the greatest attributes of winners is that they take 100% responsibility for their actions. Since it is quite easier for humans to pass the buck and blame other people for their failures, one needs someone to give the strength to accept necessary responsibility. A great mentor makes you accountable for your success and failure, thereby developing you to a higher mental state. When someone’s mind is developed to a state of accepting 100% personal responsibility, it becomes easier for him to see clearly and welcome whatever may come his way in an attempt to fulfill his dreams.
A great mentor gives you the encouragement you need to stick to your commitments. How often do we start something and later abandon it? How often do we make promises to ourselves but give up after a while? A great mentor works with you on your dreams. He obtains your commitments and constantly checks to make sure that you remain on course. He makes you fulfill your promises. Of course, a great mentor is someone you hold in high esteem so you don’t want to disappoint him. For this reason, you are bound to stick to the agreed plan.
Great mentors celebrate others’ successes. They make you feel on top of the world when you achieve your goals. They rejoice with you, as opposed to being jealous of you. As an achiever himself, a great mentor has no reason to feel jealous of your successes. Instead, he celebrates you and recommends you to others. He also sees your success as a pedestal for you to embark on another journey, and he’s ever willing to be with you again.
As you read through the above, I’m sure your mind must have been jumping from one person or the other in your life that fits some (if not all) of the seven qualities listed. As Nicola advises, you should “Surround yourself with positive, successful people and avoid spending time with people who don’t believe in you, don’t support you, and are threatened by any success you create.”
May success be yours!